First female general manager at Kalgoorlie Super Pit promises to shake up status quo – by Bettina Arrow , Sam Tomlin and Jarrod Lucas (Australian Broadcasting Corporation – September 6, 2017)

The first woman to run Kalgoorlie’s iconic Super Pit has promised to shake up the status quo at Western Australia’s most famous gold mine. Cecile Thaxter officially began as general manager at Kalgoorlie Consolidated Gold Mines on Monday, taking charge of more than 1,100 workers and millions of dollars in gold reserves.

Born in Jamaica and educated at Columbia University in New York, Ms Thaxter worked in investment banking prior to shifting into mining, where she worked in various executive roles for Super Pit co-owner Newmont Mining. As mining companies continue to push for greater female representation in senior roles, she said she was delighted by the accomplishment.

“Not necessarily for the first [woman], but for the second, third and others that come along.” Having most recently managed Newmont’s Phoenix/Lone Tree mine in Nevada, Ms Thaxter comes to Kalgoorlie-Boulder at an interesting juncture in the mine’s life.

Born out of Alan Bond’s consolidation of Kalgoorlie’s “Golden Mile” throughout the 1980s, this year has seen the mine pour its 20 millionth ounce of gold since it opened in 1989.

Fifty per cent of the mine also remains for sale, after a $US1.3 billion, Chinese-backed offer for Barrick Gold’s stake collapsed in April. With ongoing global tensions driving a steady recovery in the gold price, Ms Thaxter said she would look to put the company in the best possible position to exploit it.

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